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Top 10 of 2011: Shine Retires, French Investigated

RYE, N.Y. - As we turn the page on 2011, the Daily Rye is looking back, in no particular order, at the top 10 stories of the past year. Be on the lookout as we recap and update the top stories in Rye in 2011 in the coming days.

Superintendent Shine Announces Retirement

After 15 years as Rye's Superintendent Edward Shine, 68, announced that he will be stepping down in June of 2012. Rye schools are considered some of the best in the nation, with Rye High School ranked number 50 in Newsweek's 2011 list of top 100 schools, making replacing Shine a difficult and important task, school officials said.

The move also comes during a time of relative uncertainty for the district. With the 2 percent property tax cap looming and the rejection of the district's $20 million bond, the next superintendent will have his or her hands full keeping Rye a top school district.

Laura Slack, Rye Board of Education president, confirmed that the next superintendent will be selected by April 1 and Shine said he will not be involved in the selection process.

Rye Mayor French Under Investigation

Rye Mayor Douglas French ran into problems regarding a rental property he owns at 13 Richard Place in Rye. According to public records produced by Ray Tartaglione of "Heal the Harbor," French is currently being investigated for failing to obtain building permits on the property.

French may have also obtained an illegal tax exemption on the property as well. A STAR tax exemption is applicable only to a citizen's primary residence. Records indicate  French had been claiming the exemption on both the Richard Place property and his primary residence for around 10 years. Rye Tax Assessor Noreen Whitty is currently investigating the matter.

French has fully cooperated with both investigations.

To link to the article concerning Mayor French's building violations click here . To link to the article concerning Mayor French and the STAR tax exemption click here .

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